San Diego Students Give Their Selfless Lunch Lady A New Ride

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A beloved and selfless San Diego school lunch lady was surprised by her students Monday, when they brought her a gift she will never forget.

San Diego students wanted to show their favorite lunch lady how much they loved her. So on Monday, they gave her a new car.

Cafeteria worker Debra Davis is famous among Hoover High School and the district students. But when she’s not at work, making the kids’ lunchtime a special one, she’s cooking for the homeless.

During her 26-year career working for the San Diego Unified School District, Davis has had one car, which she uses to serve the homeless. Unfortunately, her little old mate has had more bad days than good ones lately.

“I use my car to serve the people," she told reporters. “I call her, 'Transformer.' She is my 1976 Chevy Malibu."

Having the Auto Club on speed dial, Davis is used to reaching out for help. But when State Farm Insurance partnered with the San Diego Unified for the Recycled Rides program, Morse High School, which is in the same school district, got the chance to work on a new ride for “Aunt Debbie.”

Morse is the only school in the entire Golden State with a National Automotive Technician Education Foundation certification. State Farm donated a 2014 Mazda3 to the school, which was then used by students as a way to put in practice what they learned from their education.

After fixing all of the scratches and dents, the car was like new. And on Monday, Davis was finally given her new gift.

When Davis saw her new car, she couldn’t contain her emotions.

“I thank God that they see my spirit. So I want to tell them all thank you," Davis said. "No one has ever done anything like this for me. I thought I was going to get my heaven in heaven. But I got a little piece of heaven right here."

And of course the kids’ autobody teacher, Leonardo Zarate, couldn’t be more proud.

“They are showing off their skills of repairing, and at the same time, giving away to some of their work in the community," he said.

Davis, who has a few decades-worth of technology to catch up to, said she is still not sure what she’s going to call her new ride. Regardless, she said she knows one thing for sure.

“'Transformer' is going to be upset with you,” she told her Mazda3 as she laughed.

We’re glad that these kids were able to help a woman who has helped so many people without asking for anything in return.

It’s stories like these that make us feel grateful for living in a country where this is possible.

Banner and thumbnail image credit: Wikimedia Commons/U.S. Department of Agriculture

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